can any stylus be used with the new ipad

1 Answer from the Community

  • Best Answer:

    If your question is "Is there a Stylus that will work with the new iPad" The answer is yes, there are several, look for "ipad stylus" on google.

    If your question is "Can I use just any old stylus i have laying around the house to drive the iPad" the answer is no.

    There are two types of "touch screens". The old style "pressure" touch screen (Called a Resistive Touch Screen) which works by identifying where on a device a presure is occuring, and a Capacitive touch screen (I may have the term wrong) which works by identifying where an electrical connection is being made on the screen.

    A pressure (Resistive) screen works how you expect, when something pushes down on the screen, hardware within the device calibrates where that pressure is occuring and (in some cases) how hard the pressure is. This is what lets the device know where the "tap" occurs.

    iDevices (and many others now adays) have switched from the "pressure" type to the Capacitive type of touch screen: When your finger touches the screen it causes a portion of the screen to gain/lose electrical resistance which is what tells the underlaying hardware where the user is touching.

    Generally, most stylus devices are made from some kind of plastic, and plastic is non-conductive. While a stylus works for a Resistive screen (anything that applies pressure allows the hardware to track where that pressure occurs), most stylus will not work on a capacitive screen because touching the screen with a non-conductor like plastic doesn't change the electrical capacitance of the screen. This is also why you can swipe your finger along your iOS device and cause it to do something but if you put your hand under your shirt and try the same thing it won't work. Even something like a metal pen won't work becuase it doesn't create ENOUGH of a connection on the screen.

    There's a good article on "how stuff works" that helps explain.

    • Answered by Douglas W from O Fallon
    • 26/04/2012